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Microsoft Flight Simulator News

PMDG Issues Statement Update for NGXu, 777 and More

PMDG 777 PBR (1)

Robert Randazzo of PMDG has taken to the PMDG forums to issue an update on various products including the 737 NGXu, the 777 and also their DC-6. Whilst the update covers these aircraft, it’s worth noting that none of these aircraft has received updates since the publication to his post.

Starting with the PMDG 737NGXu update, Robert said that adding compatibility with Prepar3D v5 was slowing the update down in general. The team are determined to make sure that the update includes that functionality. However, Lockheed Martin are currently beta testing hotfix 2 for Prepar3D v5 which has an impact on lighting. This has taken the team a significant amount of work to adjust dynamic lighting. Hotfix 2 has changed this significantly since the first hotfix so PMDG are awaiting on a final release of Hotfix 2 so they know what changes have been made. During this time, they continue to work on bugs and other updates which will be included when this update is finally released.

Next on the list is the PMDG 777. The update post said that once the 737 update is rolled out, attention will be back on the 777. This update will include a number of bug fixes along with PBR and Prepar3D v5 compatibility and also some new features. Robert did confirm that a 200ER expansion is coming, but will not be included in this update cycle. He also reconfirmed that the EFB will also come to the 777 packages in the future (again, not in this update cycle).

Following the release of the 777 and 737NGXu updates, an update is planned for the DC-6. As with the 777, it will feature bug fixes, PBR and Prepar3D v5 compatibility.

In light of Microsoft Flight Simulator, Robert did also confirm that they will be bringing all four major products to the new sim in the future. He said “[Microsoft Flight Simulator] promises to give us entirely new capabilities,” then adding that it will take some time to adapt. Nothing more was said, but other than they will talk more about it at the right time.

The last noteworthy part of his post was a reminder for people to ensure they’re updated with Operations Center v2 to the latest version. They will be switching off the ability for those on older versions to add liveries etc. To avoid this, simply update the ops center.

There is no mention of PMDG Global Flight Ops in this post.

That wraps up everything Robert said in this post. As always, FSElite will keep you updated with everything PMDG related going on. You can read our review for the PMDG 737NGXu here, or alternatively, read it in print via our FSElite Magazine coming this June (along with a bunch of other great content delivered direct you).

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Microsoft Flight Simulator May 28th Update – Feature Discovery Series, Alpha Patch, and more

Just now, Microsoft has released their weekly update for the upcoming Flight Simulator on their blog website. This week, Episode 8 of the Feature Discovery Series was released and covered IFR in the new sim, as well as some other great information.

Feature Discovery Series

After being pushed back multiple times, Episode 8 of the Feature Discovery Series has been released. This episode covered IFR or Instrument Flight Rules.

Starting off, the in sim NavData is updated every 28 days and is going to be provided by Navblue. This provides an ARINC 424 Navigation Database. The video also shows off the flight planning page, which can automatically generate a route for the user after selecting a departure and arrival point and based on different rules. The flight planning page is also capable of using SIDs and STARs. Different phases of flight were shown off in the A320 with the ATC giving instructions and the aircraft following the planned route. VOR, NDB, and other navigation aids are also covered in the video. The default ATC also was showed off.

Check out the full video for a more in-depth showcase than the summary we have provided here.

Alpha

The team has announced that Alpha 1.3.11.0 will be released within the next 24 hours. The update to Alpha 3 will contain “updates to Peripherals and Controls, Planes, UI, and Stability.” A full change list can be seen below.

Alpha invitations are also being sent out today, so check your emails if you have signed up to be a part of the Alpha.

Bug fixes and changes:

Peripherals and Controls:

  •  Fixed loading of the save-buffer size when loading into the XBOX Live Cloud saves – this will fix the issue that was creating new input profiles for peripherals
  • Similarly but not the same, fixed the loading of save-files from the cloud
  • Fixed the issues when setting up peripherals to allow you to validate set up

Planes:

  • Cockpit plane interiors have been updated on the 747

UI and Controls:

  • Fixed issue that was preventing users from exiting the Control Settings screen in the UI

Stability:

  • Fixed the crash after selecting a custom profile when setting up a peripheral

Feedback Snapshot

An updated Feedback Snapshot was added to the insider area.

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Community Screenshots

Lots of great Alpha screenshots were shared, showing off the beautiful 747-8i, some great landscapes, night lighting, and more.

The next update is on June 6th. We will be sure to update everyone when it’s released.

Pre-order our next issue of the FSElite magazine which will feature everything you need to know about the new Microsoft Flight Simulator. 

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Microsoft Flight Simulator Update May 21st – Alpha Patch, New Invites, and more

Microsoft Flight Simulator Update May 21st (4)

Microsoft has released their weekly update for the new Flight Simulator, and while being a shorter update, there are still some great information to check out.

Deliverables

This week’s update gives us an update on the Feature Discovery Series, and the Partnership Series. Episode 8 of the Feature Discovery Series will be released on May 28th. The Partnership Series is still scheduled for early June.

Alpha

Since last week’s release of Alpha 1.3.9.0, the team has been working on a patch to the current Alpha after community feedback. The patch will include a number of fixes and improvements. The released date and patch notes will be released in next week’s update on May 28th.

If you want to see the patch notes from the release of 1.3.9.0, go and check them out here.

Alpha invitations will start being sent out again tomorrow, so keep and eye on your emails if you have signed up to be selected.

Community Screenshots

With the last week’s release of the 747-8i for the Alpha, it is no surprise that we are getting a large number of 747 screenshots this week. Both the flight deck and exterior get attention. Other screenshots continue to show off amazing landscapes, volumetric grass, and more.

As always, we will be sure to update everyone on any new updates for the simulator once they becomes available.

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DC Designs Announces Concorde

DC Designs Concorde (7)

Its certainly been a very exciting fortnight for Concorde enthusiasts. Hot on the heels of Aeroplanes Heaven’s announcement on 8th May and cockpit renders today, DC Designs have announced that they too will be bringing the iconic supersonic bird to some our favourite simulators.

DC Designs, known for their fighter aircraft add-ons made the announcement on their Facebook page. The company also took the opportunity to share a little more about the project and what we can expect.

Of particular interest to the more ‘hardcore’ Concorde enthusiasts was the paragraph in which DC Designs outlined the complexity of the aircrafts systems. DC Designs were very open in saying that the product will still be aimed at the entertainment market but stated that the depth will be such that users will still require use of the engineers panel to complete a flight. It was also pointed out that the complexity of Concorde is so great anyway that there will still be “plenty to do for those who take on the challenge”.

As well as the announcement itself, a range of external screenshots were also shared.

The images really do portray the beauty of the Concorde itself with some focusing on the undercarriage detail and couple also demonstrating the famous ‘droop snoot’ that the aircraft was known for.

DC Designs announced that the Concorde will be its next release for FSX, FSX: Steam, all versions of P3D and the upcoming Microsoft Flight Simulator. While no concrete date was given for this, it was stated that the project is well on its way to completion and we shall be able to “race across the Atlantic quite soon”.

This is certainly one we will be watching closely and we will be sure to keep you updated with developments when they come.

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Microsoft Flight Simulator Update May 14th – 747-8i Released for Alpha Testing

Microsoft Flight Simulator Update May 14th (3)

Microsoft has uploaded their weekly update for the upcoming Microsoft Flight Simulator. A lot of amazing information is packed into this update, so lets dive right in.

Watch our video on the 747 update above.

Alpha 3 Released

Ths biggest new this update is that the latest Alpha build, version 1.3.9.0, has been released to the Alpha team. Included with this update is the Boeing 747-8i. Microsoft has said right away that they are aware this plane still has some issues, like the stall speed being off, not all of the systems are finished, and some graphical issues, but the team is ready to get it into the hands of testers. The team has also made a number of updates to the A320, and other planes. A full list of all the changes and updates to the sim can be found at the below after the screenshtos.

Alpha invitations are also starting to be sent out today. The team has outlined a two step process on invitations.

  • Ensure that everyone that received an acceptance email has access to the Alpha.
  • Assess Alpha participation options for adding more people as quickly as possible.
    • Prioritize access for those that registered early for pre-release build testing.

Postponed Deliverables

Episode 8 of the Feature Discovery Series, IFR, is still on track to be released on May 28th. The Partnership Series updated is also scheduled to come in early June.

SDK

The team has reported that the SDK development has been intensified as the SDK moves along its development and feedback from 3rd party developers comes in. They said over 200 companies and 400+ developers now have access to the SDK. The airport side of the SDK is being expanded to allow for more customization. Things like blending custom aerial imagery and creating custom painted lines per airport, as well as working to “simplifying the adaptation of existing assets to the new simulator”. On the aircraft side of the SDK, the team is working with developers to ease the transition to WebAssembly and glTF. They said that just like the airports, they are expanding what is possible and making it easier for developers to post existing assets to the new sim. The in-game developer mode is also seeing plenty of updates off of feedback from 3rd party developers.

Development Roadmap

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Screenshots

As always, Microsoft has provided plenty of new screenshots and one new video for us to check out.

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UK2000 Scenery Ceases FSX Developer Upon Release of Microsoft Flight Simulator

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UK2000 Scenery has announced that they will cease further FSX development once Microsoft Flight Simulator has been released. In a surprising announcement, the team attributed to the fact there will be too many simulator platforms to ensure compatibility on in the future and now is the time to slow production on this particular sim.

This announcement means that it is likely that Glasgow 2020HD will be the last product from the developer for the FSX (and Steam Edition) platform. Whilst the news will be sad to some, it’s welcomed by those who want to see developers embrace more modern engines to improve the overall flight simulation experience.

Whilst the UK2000 Scenery is sad by this announcement, they have said that all products will still continue to be compatible with FSX until they are updated for Microsoft Flight Simulator or have been remade.

This news follows on from UK2000 Scenery’s recent announcement of them developing the Isle of Man soon, along with a remake for Gatwick and various other projects.

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Honeycomb Aeronautical Announces Throttle Pack for Airbus A319 – A380

Honeycomb Aeronautical has announced that they will be releasing a new extension for their upcoming Bravo Throttle Quadrant. Named the Throttle Pack for Airbus™ A319 – A380, the new extension will feature additional configuration controls for the Bravo Throttle Quadrant which adds Airbus compatibility.

Included in the extension pack will be both two and four-engine aircraft throttle configuration with autothrottle disconnect. The throttles also have their own unique reverse thrust function. Furthermore, the pack will also feature the speed brake and flap lever, which has a functional lock release mechanism. This means that whether you are flying the baby Bus or the double-decker giant, you will have the throttle controls to suit your aircraft.

The Honeycomb Aeronautical Bravo Flight Controls have been in development for several years and we saw a detailed first look at the hardware last month. The hardware will enable users to have a complete throttle experience with a variety of components you can add or remove depending on the type of flying you’re doing. It also features multiple autopilot functions, a trim wheel and much more.

The Honeycomb Aeronautical Throttle Pack for Airbus™ A319 – A380 will release in the same time period as the Bravo Throttle Quadrant at a price of $69.99/€79.99/£69.99. No release date has been set by the company and is awaiting a slot from manufacturing once one opens up after the current Global COVID-19 pandemic. However, according to Honeycomb, this is approximately noted to be October 2020.

Finally, the company were to announce and the show off a new piece of hardware at FlightSimExpo later this year, However, due to the event cancellation, Honeycomb Aeronautical shared a brief teaser for their upcoming Charlie rudder pedals. 

Features and Info

  • Two and four engine setup with magnetically swappable A/T disconnect cone.
  • Functional Thrust Reversers with mechanical lock at idle position
  • Flap lever with lift to unlock function
  • Speed Brake lever.
  • MSRP $69.99/€79.99/£69.99 (Pricing is close to identical when taxes/VAT are removed).
  • Available October 2020.
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CGN Dev Announces Boeing 737 Classic for P3D V4

Screenshot 2020 05 11 737 Classic Series Introduction 2

Newcomer CGN Dev has released a Youtube video showcasing their early renditions of an upcoming Boeing 737 Classic for Prepar3D V4.

The developer stated that the aircraft is still in early development phase, with the 3D models being in the workshop. The aim at a “low” price range without further detail. The add-on will feature all the Classic Boeing 737 models (-300, 400 and 500) as well as the Freighter variants. Winglets will also be an option, however the cockpit will at first only include the EFIS version, with the steam gauges maybe coming in an update after release.

The developer is still in talk with Microsoft regarding Microsoft Flight Simulator compatibility, and is unable to state at the moment when this will be possible. No timeframe for release for Prepar3D has been disclosed either.

The website of the developer can be reached here. As you can see, the team is still recruiting in a wide range of skills.

Expected Feature List

  • Boeing 737-300/400/500 and freighter variants
  • Optional Winglets
  • EFIS cockpit
  • Native PBR support for both interior and exterior models
  • 4K texture resolution
  • Precise and detailed 3D model
  • Complete simulation of the aircraft system

The Boeing 737 Classic has been produced from 1984 to 2000, and reached just short of 2000 deliveries. It was the first major overhaul of the Boeing 737 design, with new engines, new fuselage length and a new cockpit design. It has been popular in both main and low cost carriers. The aircraft was upgraded through its life with the addition of winglets and an EFIS cockpit. Most of them have been retired from passenger service, but the -300 and -400 variants are still popular among the freighter carriers.

Make sure to stay tuned on FSElite for further news on this (very) ambitious project.

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Aeroplane Heaven Announces Concorde Development for Prepar3D and Microsoft Flight Simulator

Aeroplane Heaven Concorde (1)

In a surprise announcement, Aeroplane Heaven has announced that they are developing Concorde for both Prepar3D and the new Microsoft Flight Simulator. The very brief post on Facebook from the development team shared two renders of the plane.

“Look who poked her nose in the hanger the other day”, read the post on Facebook announcing the development. Aeroplane Heaven has described it as a “big high definition project” and that it will be coming to Prepar3D v4.5, Prepar3D v5 and Microsoft Flight Simulator.

No other details were shared this time, but we’ll be closely following with this.

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Microsoft Flight Simulator May 7th Update – Closed Beta Coming in July

Microsoft Flight Simulator Update May 7th (1)

Microsoft has posted the weekly update on their blog site. While being a shorter update, there is still some good information to look over, including information on the closed beta coming in July.

Development Roadmap

Version 5.01 of the Development Roadmap has been released on the insider area. Alpha version are slated to go up to version 5 in late June. Also on the road map is the time frame as to when the closed beta will start. In mid July, the closed beta is scheduled to start. No other information is available at the moment, but we will update everyone when new information is available.

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Postponed Deliverables

On May 28th, Microsoft will be targeting May 28th as the release of episode 8 of the Feature Discovery Series. This episode will cover IFR. The next update for the Partnership Series is now scheduled to come in early June.

Alpha

The team is currently in the final stages of the 1.3.X.X Alpha build. The team has said they have taken some extra time to work on the A320 from feedback from the community testers. The final pass on the build is going on to make sure everything is working as intented.

  • WEEK OF MAY 11th – Alpha Build Update 1.3.X.X.
    • Release Candidate in build release preparation.
    • Build notes in final review phase. Prepped for release.

The team has completed step 1 of the list below for Alpha invitations. The team is working on step 2 and will be sending out invites when the new Alpha build is released.

  • Ensure that everyone that received an acceptance email has access to the Alpha.
    • Status – Complete
  • Assess Alpha participation options for adding more people as quickly as possible.
    • Prioritize access for those that registered early for pre-release build testing.
    • Status – Prepping for release

Feedback Snapshot

A new Feedback Snapshot has also been uploaded to the main site update.

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Community Screenshots

Lastly, plenty of new screenshots have been included in this update, as well as videos this time. The two videos show a time lapse of the ramp and weather, as well as a flight through a storm.

As always, we will be sure to update everyone when the next update is released, be sure to check out Microsoft’s feeds as well. Next update is scheduled for May 14th.

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